Friday 16 May 2014

Bible Book:
2 Peter

“… what sort of persons ought you to be in leading lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God ... ?” (vv. 11b-12a)

2 Peter 3:11-13 Friday 16 May 2014


Peter has already warned his followers againstthose people who would try and predict exactly God's next move -some of the "scoffers" were already trying to convince people thatJesus would never return while others were determined to pinpointthe time when it would happen. No, said Peter - the Lord will come"like a thief" (2 Peter 3:10) - unpredicted and unexpected.

In the meantime, Peter urges his followersto "hasten" the coming of the day of God. In her poem Insomniac, Sylvia Plath describes the darknessof the night sky as a thin sheet of paper shielding a great whitelight, in which the stars are just "much-poked periods" lettingthrough tiny glimpses of this light. If this light is the kingdomof God, "where righteousness is at home" (v. 13) and which is verymuch already in existence, then Peter is urging the people to makeas many holes as possible in the veil of sin, despair and deceitthat separates us from God. To let in as much light as possible -to give the world a preview of the "new heavens and a new earth"(v. 13) that the Lord has promised. By living lives of "holinessand godliness", God's people can move the world more swiftlytowards the day when the carbon paper will be ripped away and theearth will be transformed by the light.

There is some argument among scholars as towhether passages like this and Revelation 21:1 ("Then I saw a new heaven and anew earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passedaway…") mean that the current universe will be annihilated ortransformed - it varies between translations. It seems that just aswe cannot know exactly when this will be, we cannot predict exactlywhat it will be like - only that we 'wait for the day of Lord'.

To Ponder

  • Why do you think we always want to know precisely what willhappen next?
  • To what extent is Peter really asking "what sort of peopleought you to be" - or does he already have the answer?


Previous Page Thursday 15 May 2014
Next Page Saturday 17 May 2014